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HEADING OFF TROUBLE?

Is the July 2 benefit that the producers of “Big Trouble in Little China” are co-hosting with the local Chinese community a ploy to defuse the kind of backlash that cursed “Year of the Dragon” last year?

“Absolutely not,” said Daniel Kwan, a marketing coordinator at 20th Century Fox. “It’s distressing that the Asian community constantly think of themselves as being on the short end. We are constantly suspicious of motives, even when something is as positive as this production.”

“Big Trouble,” which began filming about two months after “Dragon” was released to well-organized protest, is described as “a mystical action-adventure-comedy-kung fu-ghost story about the imaginary world under Chinatown.” John Carpenter directs; Kurt Russell stars.

Dr. Andrew Wong, board chairman of East West Players and a benefit organizer, is convinced the studio is “sincere”: “We can’t afford to turn our hands away in friendship. We have to not be afraid of people wanting to make an effort to correct a past problem, whether or not it was done by pressure.”

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The $100 per person benefit for 400 people--complete with acrobats, martial artists, magicians and even a circus lion--will take place at Fox (the movie opens the same day). Proceeds will go to two Chinese organizations and East West Players.


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